Ann Romney: My marriage to Mitt is "real"

For Ann and Mitt, this question was easy. Family first

Mitt's greatest accomplishment?

Ann Romney will tell delegates at the Republican National Convention Tuesday night that her marriage to Mitt Romney is not a "storybook marriage" - it's a real one.

"I read somewhere that Mitt and I have a 'storybook marriage,'" she plans to say, according to excerpts of her speech released by the Romney campaign. "Well, in the storybooks I read, there were never long, long, rainy winter afternoons in a house with five boys screaming at once. And those storybooks never seemed to have chapters called MS or Breast Cancer. A storybook marriage? No, not at all. What Mitt Romney and I have is a real marriage."

The speech excerpts make clear that Ann Romney plans to stress both her own struggles and those of her husband in an attempt to humanize Mitt Romney, who faces a significant empathy gap against President Obama. She is "the most potent surrogate" to make the case for Romney as a person, GOP officials told CBS News Tuesday.

"Tonight I want to talk to you from my heart about our hearts," she plans to say. "I want to talk not about what divides us, but what holds us together as an American family. I want to talk to you tonight about that one great thing that unites us, that one thing that brings us our greatest joy when times are good, and the deepest solace in our dark hours. Tonight I want to talk to you about love."

"Mitt's dad never graduated from college," she plans to tell delegates. "Instead, he became a carpenter. He worked hard, and he became the head of a car company, and then the governor of Michigan. When Mitt and I met and fell in love, we were determined not to let anything stand in the way of our life together."

Later, Romney will argue that her experience with her husband shows he would be an effective president. She will tell delegates that "this man I met at a high school dance" has worked to help others throughout his life, including at the Salt Lake City Olympics, "when many wanted to give up."

"This is the man America needs," she plans to say. "This is the man who will wake up every day with the determination to solve the problems that others say can't be solved, to fix what others say is beyond repair."

"This is the man who will work harder than anyone so that we can work a little less hard," she plans to tell delegates. "I can't tell you what will happen over the next four years. But I can only stand here tonight, as a wife, a mother, a grandmother, an American, and make you this solemn commitment: This man will not fail. This man will not let us down. This man will lift up America!"

IN DEPTH: Can Ann Romney make Mitt loveable?


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